Friday September 20, 2013Gator Trio Leads No. 4 Florida to 3-0 Sweep of Marquette
The No. 4 University of Florida volleyball team earned its seventh sweep of the season with a 3-0 victory over Marquette (25-21, 25-21, 25-13) in the opening match of the Marquette Invitational.
Senior Chloe Mann hit .579 against the Golden Eagles with 13 kills on 19 swings, adding four blocks for 15 points. Sophomore Živa Recek tallied 12 kills on the night, while freshman right-side hitter Alex Holston hit .421 with nine kills Friday.
· Junior libero Taylor Unroe scooped 15 digs against Marquette, her 21st straight match with double-digit digs. The tally dates back to her 20-dig match against Tennessee on Nov. 4, 2012.
· Senior setter Taylor Brauneis led the Gators to their seventh match of the season above .300, dishing out 37 assists and leading Florida to a .317 hitting percentage. In the third set alone, the Orange and Blue hit an errorless .630 (17-0-27).
· Florida is undefeated (10-0) when capturing the first set in 2013.
Chloe’s a “Mann”ster: Chloe Mann needs just one more attempt to qualify for Florida’s career hitting percentage mark. She has 1199 attempts for her career and needs 1200 to be eligible. Mann is hitting .466 for her career with 661 kills as a Gator. The current record is held by Heather Wright (1997-2000), who hit .424 during her Gator tenure.
Not On Our Watch: Florida has forced seven of its 11 opponents to operate at under .200 hitting efficiency, including two negative offensive outputs. The Gators held the Golden Eagles to a .146 hitting percentage.
Roaring Run: Down by seven in the first set at 4-11, the Gators fought back to tie the stanza, 12-12. Great serving runs by Antwi and Brauneis aided the Gators in fighting their way back to the first set victory.
Mary’s Minute: “This was a great Friday night match to prepare us for SEC play. They have a fantastic environment here and Marquette is a well-coached team. Playing as hard as Marquette did, it may look like just another 3-0 win but we had to play very well to earn those points. In the first set, the offense started a little slow and we needed the defense to kind of almost hold serve and keep us on track. For us to play as well as we did in the third set and hit over .300 for the match, it says a lot about what our defense was able to do for us at the beginning to let our offense get in the match.”
Mary by the Numbers:
At Florida: 696-81
Records: Florida: 10-1, Marquette: 5-4, Wisconsin-Milwaukee: 4-6
Up Next: Florida takes on Wisconsin-Milwaukee in the second match of the Marquette Invitational. The Gators and the Panthers match up at 7 p.m. ET Saturday night at Marquette’s Al McGuire Center.
Panther to Watch: Rachel Neuberger has played in all 39 sets for the Panthers, tallying 114 kills and hitting .340. She’s getting most of the work done defensively for Milwaukee as well, stuffing .87 blocks/set.
All-Time: Florida and Milwaukee will be competing against each other for the first time in program history. The No. 4 Gators are the highest-ranked opponent Milwaukee has ever faced.
NCAA Numbers: Senior Chloe Mann is fourth in the NCAA in hitting percentage (.493), while the Gators are fourth in the nation with a .331 offensive clip. Senior setter Taylor Brauneis is ninth in assists (11.59/set) and 13th in aces (.56/set).
Defense Doing Work: The Florida defense had one of its best weekends of the year at the Active Ankle Challenge, as libero Taylor Unroe averaged 4.70 digs/set over the weekend. Sophomore Nikki O’Rourke made the most of her minutes, averaging 2.60 digs/set in just three rotations. Junior Holly Pole was right behind her, turning in a 2.50 dig/set average over the weekend. The Gators had five players in double-digit digs against Stanford, the first time since Florida’s five-set defeat to Tennessee last season (November 4, 2012). UF has a .968 reception percentage, their second-highest in the last five seasons.
On The Horizon: Florida starts SEC play in the Magnolia State against Mississippi State (Fri., Sept. 27 – 8 p.m. ET) and Ole Miss (Sun., Sept. 29 – 2:30 p.m. ET). After the Gators’ participation in the Marquette Invitational, Florida will not see a non-conference opponent until the postseason.
Preseason Buzz: Florida was picked to win the Southeastern Conference title in a preseason vote of the league’s coaches, while senior middle blocker Chloe Mann and sophomore outside hitter Živa Recek were named Preseason All-SEC. Mann was also recently named a candidate for the Senior CLASS Award and is representing the Gators with a blog on ESPNW.
They’re Back: Florida returns 11 letterwinners and five starters from a year ago, including First Team All-American Mann, AVCA National Freshman of the Year Recek, AVCA Honorable Mention All-American setter Taylor Brauneis, 2011 SEC All-Freshman Team honoree Taylor Unroe and sophomore outside hitter Gabby Mallette.
Lights, Camera, Action: Florida will be on television 12 times during the course of the 2013 regular season, the most of any Southeastern Conference program. The Gators’ next televised match is Friday, October 4 at home against Texas A&M.
Follow the Gators: For all of the latest information on Florida volleyball, please visit GatorZone. For up-to-the-minute updates, follow Florida Volleyball (@GatorZoneVB) and Coach Mary Wise (@GatorMary) on Twitter. You can also find the Gators on Facebook.
Saturday, September 21